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Light hookup

Discussion in 'Ohio Bowfishing' started by Caribou Dreamer2, Jan 7, 2003.

  1. Will be looking at hooking up some lights on my boat this spring to try some night shooting and was wondering what the best lights to use and how to hook them all together and also what kind of power source to use.
    I was think about car fog lamps about two to three sets and was wanting to run them off a trolling batttery.How long do you think they will last on a battery or would it best to invest in a generator.Also for those that have shot at night do you leave the main lights on at all times or do you use a spot light intill you find fish then hit them with the power.Thanks for the help
  2. Your best bet is to go with a generator and light setup...If you don't want to spend the money for a generator you can get by with a 12 volt setup with foglights but then your limited to the amount of batteries you can carry and they put off alot less light. You'd probably not get much more than a 1-2 hrs of shooting with that many lights off one battery....As far as 120V lights get a 500W halogen security light....the ones with the flat reflectors give off alot better light than those dimpled ones....If your worried about your generator load then you can go with 300 W lights or even High out 350W bulb which put out nearly the light of the 500's. For light penetration get them as far above the water as your can to help light penetrate. I've got mine mounted on a knee rail on my front deck. How big of a boat are you planning on rigging? Good luck and ir you've got any more questions then let me know....

  3. I only have a 14 ft alum boat,We built platforms in the front and rear to stand on better footing than those seats were.How good do you do during the night over day shooting is lighting worth the time to setup??If you could and don't mind i will be asking some more questions on lighting when i get this project rolling.So i guess i will be looking into a geneator any suggestions? Thanks
  4. Most of the time nightshooting will produce alot more fish than you see during the day...About the only time I'd say that daytime will outproduce is during the spawn becuase you can spot the fish froma distance and interscept them. I've never seen spawning take place at night but often the bigger fish will be out of the thick cover and cruising at night.
    There are places that I shoot that you'll be lucky to even see a fish during the day but at night you can have almost non-stop action....The main thing that'll really frustrate you shooting at night is muddy water.....
    With shooting out of a 14 footer I'd be worried about weight. Your best bet would be to get a small generator and run either 4 or 6 lights. I'd also make the generator removable so you can shed some weight during the day...If ya need anything else feel free to ask....
  5. One site you really should check out is . Any possible question you have on boats, lighting, fans, shooting, or equiptment can be found if you take some time and look through their archives. It's chock-full of info!
  6. That was the big thing i was worried about was the weight ,we took 1/2 inch ply and made a front deck and rear deck and with all the gear and two guys it pretty much at its limit but will have fun trying something,and Thanks for the info for night shooting was wondering if you do better at night than during the day light hours thanks again will let you know how it goes.
  7. I'm looking into a small generator to run about four lights off the front of my boat. Maybe mounting the lights on a bar system to mount to the boat during the night shoot and take off during the day. But still at the drawing board.;)
  8. Ya could maybe mount your lighst onto a PVC would be light and plus you could feed your light wire back thru the piping so it would be enclosed similar to conduit...Clarence.. with your 16 footer I'd consider running 6 300 watt bulbs to give more light coverage...that way you'd only have 1800 watts of output so you could get away witha generator in the mid 2000's rating....Just a thought...
  9. Thats a great Idea Jake!! I'm going to be checking out some generators this week. Where do you think I could pick up some lights at 300W?
  10. Go to your local electrical supply house and they'll hook ya up....Make sure and get lights with flat reflectors cause they give alot better light....I'd get housings that are rated for 500W cause they cost the same and the 300W bulbs will fit into the same housing....If you get a 3K generator ya could runs 5's off the front and 3's off the side or even run the 350W high output bulbs...These bulbs cost more but put out nearly the light of a 500W bulb.....
  11. I'm going to check it all out and give it a try this year.;)
  12. Ok been working on my lights,but i still have some more question can yuo us standard 110 house wirw to hook up your lights.I was told to use a heavy outdoor wire something like sj or sj0 wire would this wire be better or is standard 110 house wire good enough.will post some pictures whenall finished .thanks again for the help guys.
    I went with 4- 300 watt regent flood lamps two are wired together with a plug on the end ,then i will plug the two sets of lights to a gfi outlet plug box which is wire to a plug itself which will then be plugged into the genny.Sound good?
  13. About the best and most cost effective wire to use is to buy some outdoor extension cords and cut them to length then wire the plugs onto the end...Also, be careful wiring the lights in series off one cord...I'm not enough of a electrician to tell you why but I know most folks recommend against it...Sounds like things are goin great.
  14. I thought about the extension cord but talked to a electrician and he said that the wires inside of the cord are very small and would not carry the full amount of electric needed to get full power to the lamps.So you are saying that i should put each light on it own wire and plug then use a four plug outlet instead of wiring two light together then to a two plug outlet?This is all new so i'm asking alot of question here,but i want to do it right though.
  15. Here's my experience from when I rigged my boat.

    If you look at heavy-duty outdoor cords, they should have a rating on them. At least the ones I used did. They will say something like 1250 watts max, etc. Get some that are rated for a little higher than what you'll need.

    As far as running the lamps, I had seven running on one circuit. They all were plugged into one slot on the genny. Needless to say, a cord carrying 3500 watts when it's rated for 1850 gets pretty damn hot! So I divided the load to two separate cords. Three lights on one, four on the other. I think it is also easier on the genny?

    Keep us updated. Sounds like a project-I've been there! It's worth it in the end though.
  16. Like Brent said...extension cords have more than enough rating for your light load as long as you distribute the load. I have each of my lights wired on its own cord and plug and those tie into 3 Xtra heavy 6 or 8 gauge generator cords that run to the back of my boat and plug into my genny.....If I gte a chance I'll take some pics of my setup and post em....
  17. Ok so your guys are saying that i would do better if i seperate the fours light into two light circuit then have two plugs that plug into the genny instead of one. That does make sense. Thanks guys.Will keep you posted on the progress.
    Do you think that standard 110 house wire will work or should i go with something else?
  18. If you are only going to be running two lights on each cord a 15 amp outdoor extention cord is more than enough..Are you going to be using 500 0r 350 watt bulbs??To figure out the amps that you will be drawing all you have to do is divide the watts by the volts..( 500 watts div. by 120 volts =alittle over 4 amps /light)So if you are only going to have 2 lights on two seperate plugs you are only at about half..And the cords will never get hot..And as you said this also easier on the gen.The load will be spread out over two plugs instead of being consintrated on one..
  19. Thanks alot there whit_1 I have not run any wiring yet just got everything mounted up though,Do you think it would be better to go with a good outdoor ext. cord or use your standard flat 110 wire.Which would be better to run i up for suggestion here.